Baptism for the Dead? (Q&A)

An early Christian baptistery in the shape of a cross.

“Else what will those being baptized for the dead do?  If in fact the dead are not raised, why indeed are they being baptized for them?” (1 Cor. 15:29)

Q:  I noticed that this verse says something about baptizing for the dead. What does that mean? –Tammie H.

A:  The short answer is that nobody knows for sure.  The long answer is that they were probably being baptized for believers who had died before they were baptized.*  

Hell, Hades, and Gehenna: A List of Verses

Confused about hell?  It’s no wonder.  Most English translations, and many other languages, use one word, "hell," to translate the names of two radically different places: Hades and Gehenna.  They couldn’t be more different:  one is spiritual, the other physical; one is temporary, the other eternal.  So how can we get these two straightened out?  We’ll start with a short description of each one, and then list all the verses where they appear, so you’ll know exactly what the Bible is talking about.